News Release Date: July 28, 2016
Contact: NPS Investigative Services Branch, Tip Line 888-653-0009
Reward offered for information about recent theft of firefighting equipment
Special Agents with the Investigative Services Branch (ISB) and US Park Rangers of Valles Caldera National Preserve are seeking information about the recent theft of crucial wildland firefighting equipment.
Between 6:00 p.m. on July 23 and 11:00 a.m. on July 24, unknown persons forcibly entered a closed area in the preserve, broke into several storage units and stole a significant amount of equipment that is part of the National Park Service (NPS) firefighting program. Among the stolen items are a utility task vehicle (UTV), an equipment trailer, drip torches, fuel cells, gas cans, tools, pumps, generators, and compressors.
The affected wildland fire crew was working on the Big Hat Fire in the preserve when the theft occurred. They had recently returned from the Dog Head Fire in Albuquerque and from other fire assignments in New Mexico and Arizona. The loss of this equipment will adversely impact interagency firefighting operations in northern New Mexico for the rest of the year.
If you have information about what happened, please contact us. Though you may remain anonymous, investigators are offering a reward of up to $2,000 for information leading the identification, arrest, and conviction of those responsible for this crime.